Resveratrol: the ‘longevity molecule’ and its use in skincare
Over the past 10 years, resveratrol has come to be known as the “longevity molecule.” Resveratrol works in a number of ways to improve skin function and appearance, and studies have proven it to be one of the top antioxidants in anti-ageing skincare. This potent antioxidant’s unique multi-action approach helps neutralise free radicals, which damage cells leading to tissue damage, and promotes the production of the skin’s natural antioxidants1.
What is resveratrol?
A natural antioxidant, resveratrol is found in more than 70 plant species and botanical sources including; berries, peanuts, grapes, and red wine. In plants, it protects the plant from stresses to its surface, such as from Ultraviolet light and fungal infections.
Resveratrol has long been used in Eastern medicine where it is valued for its diverse antioxidant and therapeutic properties.
What role does resveratrol play in anti-ageing?
Skin ageing is a complex process caused by a combination of the natural, intrinsic, ageing process and the environmental stresses the skin endures daily, known as extrinsic ageing. The driver behind skin ageing is believed to be the increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), or oxidation, which disturbs cell function, damages cell membranes and disrupts the formation of collagen. The loss of collagen has a highly detrimental effect on the functioning of the skin and is deemed the primary cause of wrinkling2. Antioxidants work to counter this process by neutralising the damaging oxidants.
Post-menopausal women lose collagen at a rate of 1% every year3, which accentuates the wrinkling process and causes skin to become thin and fragile. One method of mitigating collagen loss is through increasing oestrogen levels. Resveratrol also has phytoestrogenic properties, meaning it is a source of oestrogen derived from plants, and is now of particular interest as its application may mitigate collagen loss without the risks associated with other hormonal therapies, thus improving the visible signs of ageing.
Resveratrol’s antioxidant activity is its most potent weapon against ageing. As a polyphenolic antioxidant, resveratrol performs a dual antioxidant role. In addition to neutralising free radicals, thus reducing ongoing damage, it also increases the production of other naturally occurring antioxidants in skin cells. This means that not only does Resveratrol help repair accumulated damage, but it also prevents against skin damage in the future.
How is resveratrol different to other antioxidants?
It is the combined method of action that makes resveratrol one of the best antioxidants in anti-ageing and different to other, topically applied antioxidants, such as vitamin C and ferulic acid. It is unique in that it is capable of neutralising free radicals in a similar way to other antioxidants, and has the ability to increase and strengthen the skin’s natural antioxidant defences.
What are the benefits of using resveratrol?
In a study published in 20144 , resveratrol was found to result in a significant improvement in skin quality; reducing the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines, and uneven skin tone, whilst increasing firmness and elasticity. Notably the study found that there was 18.9% improvement in skin density after 12 weeks and 10.1% improvement in skin radiance after 12 weeks.
Resveratrol was also shown to significantly boost the skin’s antioxidant defence system allowing the skin to enhance its self-repair capabilities and rebuild following any new damage. The most effective way to benefit from resveratrol’s true potential and full concentration is through topical application5.
Resveratrol B E night treatment combines a maximised concentration of pure, stable Resveratrol with baicalin and alpha tocopherol (vitamin E) to strengthen the skin’s natural defence system against free radical damage and to combat the signs of skin ageing by improving skin radiance, elasticity, and density6 .
When to apply Resveratrol B E?
The appropriate timing of application of Resveratrol is significant since the antioxidant has been shown to possess light-sensitive qualities. For this reason, night-time application of Resveratrol B E is advised.
For more information on skincare ingredients, go to our Skincare Ingredients Dictionary.
This article is intended as general information only. You should seek advice from a professional before starting any new regimen or course of conduct.
1,2,3,5 Farris P. Resveratrol: A unique antioxidant offering a multi-mechanistic approach for treating ageing skin. J Drugs Dermatol, 2013.
4,6 Farris P. Evaluation of efficacy and tolerance of a nighttime topical antioxidant containing resveratrol, baicalin, and vitamin e for treatment of mild to moderately photodamaged skin. J Drugs Dermatol, 2014.